National honours for Essex village

PUBLISHED: 12:11 27 November 2009 | UPDATED: 07:28 30 May 2010

RESIDENTS of Great Bardfield will have more reason to celebrate this Christmas after the village was crowned a national category winner in the Calor Village of the Year. Previously named the regional winner in the Communications category last month, the v

RESIDENTS of Great Bardfield will have more reason to celebrate this Christmas after the village was crowned a national category winner in the Calor Village of the Year.

Previously named the regional winner in the Communications category last month, the village went on to claim honours at national level - and scoop £500 in prize money in the process.

Parish clerk Kate Fox said: "Obviously we are delighted. It is hoped that this will help sustain the vibrant business community which paid a significant part in our win and also act as a catalyst for other community projects and encourage the young people to continue to be involved."

Judges made some impressive comments about Great Bardfield's ability to interact with its public:, noting that "the Community Information Point is central and multi-purpose with computer facilities for public use. It is a prime example of following through an idea to everyone's benefit".

They added: "The combination of the Bardfield Times, the community website, noticeboards and the Welcome Pack all combine to excellent effect. The village shows a great attitude towards developing an inclusive, well-informed community."

Ms Fox added: "The parish council is very proactive but there is also invaluable support from the community - both residents and business people.

"They support fund-raising magnificently and the current fundraising for the new pavilion has been supported from every quarter of the village, across the age range.

"The residents and business people the judges have spoken to over the period of the competition deserve a big thank you - without their support we would not have been able to achieve this recognition."

Calor Village of the Year manager, Holly Sims, added: "We're delighted to be able to recognise Great Bardfield villagers for all the wonderful projects and hard work that have gone into making the community the best for Communications in England.

"I know that our judges had a very difficult task to select the overall category winner so it really is testament to Great Bardfield's innovation, hard work and determination that they have won through."

To win the national title, Great Bardfield beat off competition from Rainow in Cheshire, Goring on Thames in Oxfordshire, Porlock in Somerset, and Bonsall in Derbyshire.

The village was also up for the national Business category award, but narrowly missed out with the Dorset village of Halstock winning through.

To find out more about Calor Village of the Year visit the competition website at www.calorvillageoftheyear.org

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